WASHINGTON – A low-ranking intelligence analyst charged in the biggest leak of classified information in U.S. history is a step closer to a general court-martial after a second Army officer signed off on this step.
The Army says Col. Carl Coffman sent his recommendation Wednesday to Maj. Gen. Michael Linnington, commander of the Military District of Washington. Linnington will decide whether to order a trial for Pfc. Bradley Manning.
Coffman concurred with the presiding officer at Manning's preliminary hearing last month. The 24-year-old Crescent, Okla., native faces 22 counts, including aiding the enemy.
Manning allegedly gave more than 700,000 secret U.S. documents to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks for publication.
Defense lawyers say the emotionally troubled soldier should never have been deployed to Iraq or given access to classified material.